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Melt Banana, Rolo Tomassi, That Fucking Tank

by copsandrobbers | Print the article

17 June at the Brudenell
£9 advance

Melt Banana

Japanese noise rock experiemental band Melt Banana found more success in the U.S. and the U.K. than in their own country, gaining a small but dedicated fan base among American and European punk rock fans. They were one of John Peel’s favourite acts and have been as inspirational as Sonic Youth, Nirvana on todays alternative landscape. They have collaborated with Jello Biafra (Dead Kennedys), The Locust, Merzbow and have toured with the crème de la crème of the last two decades of interesting acts. Although their music sounds noticeably different from any sort of traditional punk, it contains some punk elements: shrieking vocals, overdriven guitars, and one-and-a-half-minute songs. Melt Banana’s unique style, however, comes as a result of the distinctly piercing vocals of lead singer Yasuko O. As well as the frenzied, effect-charged playing of guitarist Agata Searing, intense, and mind-blowingly fast are perhaps the first adjectives that come to mind when listening to Melt Banana’s music. Try to imagine an even more energetic incarnation of the Boredoms.

But, for many, the appeal of Melt Banana is not entirely limited to their music. Yasuko O’s lyrics and song titles reflect a Japanese pop culture that is fascinating and strange, yet attractive to many non-Japanese fans. As time passes, their overshadowing influence is becoming more and more evident within the cultish following of the noise-core movement. However, it is the band’s incredible severity and furious sound that has gained them the most recognition. Their shockingly intense live shows are that of sheer legend, with many fans leaving sweaty and exhausted, and Yasuko O often persevering through nosebleeds.

Melt-Banana have released eight full-length albums and 23 EPs (primarily split releases with other bands, most of which were compiled onto one disc in 2005). In 1997, they created their own recording company, A-Zap (formerly Iguana Coax), and re-issued most of all their early albums. During this time, drummer Toshiaki Sudoh quit. Since then, the band has had different drummers helping for tours and recordings. They do massive U.S. and U.K. tours yearly and do smaller Japanese tours (the reason for this, according to them, is that travelling in Japan is quite expensive). Most recently, Melt-Banana recorded the song “Hair-Cat (Cause the Wolf Is a Cat!)” for Perfect Hair Forever on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim lineup. The latest album, Bambi’s Dilemma, was released on April 24, 2007.

www.last.fm/music/Melt-Banana – All the info and video clips
www.myspace.com/azap
www.skingraftrecords.com/bandhtm … ltban.html
www1.parkcity.ne.jp/mltbanan/

ROLO TOMASSI (HOLY ROAR)

Probably the biggest hope for the U.K’s hardcore/noise community, they are frequently asked to support U.S acts coming over and are playing the Futuresonic festival in Manchester. These guys are on the same label as Gallows and Cutting Pink with knives but show a lot more talent than these copyists.

A veritable smorgasbord of styles, these female-helmed discotech thrashers specialise in adrenaline-soaked, keyboard-laden art-punk that jerks, jolts and jigs with an ultra-camp temperamentality.

The band’s debut self-titled EP was released in late 2006 via Holy Roar and subsequently sold out; a re-pressing featuring bonus tracks is available now.

www.last.fm/music/Rolo+Tomassi
www.myspace.com/rolotomassi

THAT FUCKING TANK

Doom funk for all the family, now featuring Giles Bailey on vocals.. If you live in Leeds and you don’t know these guys then shoot yourself.


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